By mid-summer, you should be sick of that swimsuit diet you've been on, especially since swimsuit weather won't hit our local shores until October. So you'll be glad to know that the major San Francisco food fest, formerly known as SF Chefs, now rebranded as Eat Drink SF, will kick off at the end of July and, this year, there's been a venue change. Rather than hosting the three-day "grand tasting" event in a tent at Union Square, the event is shifting over to the festival pavilion at the Fort Mason Center, with the various other, smaller events occurring around Fort Mason as well.
It's generally a fun event with a ton of great food, wine, and cocktails, and it rivals the notoriously bougie Pebble Beach Food & Wine, but with way better, and way more food at the grand tastings. (It's also notable that Eat Drink SF has now scored Lexus as a sponsor, given that the luxury car brand has long been attached to both Pebble Beach and Aspen Food & Wine.)
The primary reason for the venue change is an issue of capacity and breathing room, since the Saturday night event had become a crowded mess in the Union Square tent the past few years. Food- and drink-related events kick into high gear this year the week of July 27, with the grand tasting events happening August 1 to 3.
The full lineup for each of the three days has now been released, which you can see here starting with Friday.
This year, for a new twist, organizers are tasking restaurants to serve dishes along a common theme each night, with Friday's tasting focusing on new trends and latest "obsessions," Saturday night's tasting focusing on restaurants' signature dishes, and Sunday's event being more brunch-y, and focusing on Bay Area artisans, chefs, and farmers. Tickets for the Lexus Grand Tasting events can be found here, and they start at $125.
And if that's not enough, food fans can get the gorging started on July 13 with the annual Lamb Jam, also at Fort Mason, in which 12 local chefs compete to create the best lamb dish in all the land. And on Sunday, July 27, there's a fancy kickoff dinner featuring chefs whose restaurants are all on the Chronicle's Top 100 list this year, including celebs Tyler Florence and Michael Chiarello. That's taking place at The Cavalier, and tickets are $325, with proceeds are going to the SF-Marin Food Bank.
See more details at the Eat Drink SF website. But, for now, keep that crash-diet going.